The Donor Circus

Life 5 - The Donor Circus
Zambia, southern Africa, is one of the poorest countries in the world, where one in every six children dies before reaching their fifth birthday. Its economy depends heavily on international aid: over 40% of the Zambian government's budget comes from foreign donors. In 2003 that was $560 million. While the EU prefers to channel most of its aid through the government, the US and the Japanese still fund individual projects, such as the building of a new school which is being completed by a Japanese contractor.

There are many individual NGOs in Zambia involved in local projects, independent from government and funded directly by international donors. But now the government is arguing that it should be in control of dispersing all international development aid. The days of individual donors funding individual projects could be a thing of the past.

'The visual impact of the gripping documentaries in the Life 5 series make them extremely powerful teaching tools for university, and indeed, other classrooms. In succinct episodes they raise and contextualise some of the most critical issues in the world today. These episodes are produced in an extremely objective manner and allow an audience easily to come to grips with an array of complex problems. They ought to be an indispensable part of the teaching curriculum.' Dr. Jeremy Sarkin, Visiting Professor of International Human Rights, Tufts University

'The importance of these films is that they are intended to raise awareness about global issues in young people, and can be used by anyone for this purpose. The quality of the films is excellent. They are documentaries about the U.N. Millennium Development Goals and include brief interviews with people who are actually involved in MDG programs, from various institutions and from the grassroots to executive level...The objective evidence about the current global crisis of insecurity, poverty, gender inequalities, environmental degradation, and lack of international cooperation is presented in a way that is both realistic and non-inflammatory.

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Citation

Main credits

Summers, Ben (film director)
Kerr, Alistair (editor of moving image work)
Bower, Dick (film producer)
Dunbar, Sally (narrator)

Other credits

Editor, Alistair Kerr; series producer, Dick Bower.


Docuseek2 subjects

Distributor subjects

African Studies
Anthropology
Developing World
Economics
Geography
Globalization
Humanities
International Aid
International Studies
Millennium Development Goals
Poverty
Sociology
United Nations

Keywords

Zambia, international aid, poorest countries, NGOs, foreign donors, EU, Japanese, local projects, international development aid; "The Donor Circus"; Bullfrog Films